Police Stations Closure Consultation Ends

The consultation phase has now closed in the review of the Police Scotland Estate in Dumfries and Galloway which saw an examination in the use of a total of eight local police stations across the Division.

The police stations, at Gretna, Moffat, Langholm, Thornhill, Kirkcudbright, Dalbeattie, Whithorn and Dalry had all been identified as not being essential to local service delivery in the region, and did not therefore represent best value to local communities.

On Tuesday 7 February 2017, local policing Divisional Commander Chief Superintendent Gary Ritchie will present the results of the feedback received through the consultation process to the Police, Fire and Rescue Committee. He will also outline the approach to be recommended for consideration in relation to the future of these stations and alternatives for the provision of services in the affected areas. The report being presented includes an outline of the new policing model which was implemented in October 2016 across the Division, and which highlights the alignment of response resources to concentrated locations which will ensure better supervision, briefing and tasking of these officers. It also details the new approach to community policing which will see community officers better deployed locally and in a more proactive and visible manner. This new policing model has allowed for a robust review of the estate requirement in the Division whereby there is now no requirement for station facilities which previously housed response staff, nor any direct public access to a front counter.

The report will also outline the future general requirements for facilities in seven out of the eight locations which will be required in order to ensure the new policing model can be delivered in a seamless transition when these stations are eventually disposed of. In the eighth location, Whithorn, the current deployment model would be maintained and therefore there would be no requirement for a local base.

The preferred options being recommended for the Police Stations consideration are:-
1. Gretna Police Station be removed from the police estate and alternative provision secured at the Richard Greenhow Centre in Gretna subject to agreement with the Richard Greenhow Management Committee and Dumfries and Galloway Council.

2. Moffat Police Station be removed from the police estate and alternative provision secured at Moffat Town Hall subject to agreement with Moffat Town Hall trust and Dumfries and Galloway Council.

3. Thornhill Police Station be removed from the police estate with part of the facility thereafter rented by the SPA subject to agreement with the new owners.

4. The facility at Langholm Town Hall be retained.

5. Kirkcudbright Police Station be removed from the police estate and alternative provision secured at Kirkcudbright Fire Station in agreement with Fire Scotland.

6. Dalbeattie Police Station be removed from the police estate and alternative provision secured at Dalbeattie Fire Station in agreement with Fire Scotland.

7. Dalry Police Station be retained.

8. Whithorn Police Station be removed from the police estate but only if the future of the ambulance provision from this facility is secured either by purchase of the facility by the Scottish Ambulance Service or through some other arrangement.

Chief Superintendent Ritchie said “we have completed the most extensive consultation exercise ever undertaken in Dumfries and Galloway Division in respect of the future use of some of our premises. I am grateful to the people who took the time to, not only provide us their views, but also to listen to the plans we are developing in respect of community policing arrangements. I am also grateful to our local partners who have engaged fully with us throughout this process. This has enabled us to come up with creative solutions which absolutely reflects the strong spirit of partnership and collaboration that we see throughout the region.
“Everyone was very honest on their feelings for maintaining a local station in their community but there was also a lot of understanding in respect of the lack of value that some of our current premises presented, especially in light of our new community policing approach. The recommendations I have made in respect of our estate balance these two considerations and I consider this offers the best service potential and value for the communities of Dumfries and Galloway. Although these are recommendations and not final decisions I should stress that no station will be removed from the police estate until the alternative arrangement is in place and on approval from the SPA.”


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